Cuomo visits Monticello

Spotlight on after-school programs

MONTICELLO, NY — Gov. Andrew Cuomo visited the Kenneth L. Rutherford Elementary School on November 16 to announce new funding for after-school programs in the region. Addressing grade-school students and other members of the community, Cuomo said the state is providing $7.8 million in Empire State After-School Program funding has been awarded to two high-need school districts in the Mid-Hudson Valley. He said “Monticello Central School District is receiving funding for 885 more slots... Fallsburg Central School District is getting 400 new slots.”

During his remarks to the young students, Cuomo said, “We understand that education now is not just about sitting at a desk and learning the subjects. It’s about making sure all the services that the child needs are there and all the help they need is there. Something we call community schools with wraparound services—that’s important. And changing the way we think about school where it doesn’t really end at three is important.”

He said that the state is expanding the number of programs available to students after school because, “There’s exercise things you can do, more education that you can do, and going home at three and just playing with video games doesn’t really help you.”

He said that this is part of what’s needed to insure that more students go to college, and he referenced the state’s free college tuition program. “It’s more important than ever before. People like me really didn’t have to go to college. If you could find a job you’d be fine. But now you need to go to college. In five years, half of all the new jobs are going to require college. So you know what else we did in this state that no other state did? Because this is the greatest state in the country? We said if you can get into college you’re going to college. I don’t care if your mother can pay, your father can pay, your family can pay; if you get in, the state of New York will pay for your college education at a state school.”

He closed his remarks with a pop quiz. He said the first reason the state is investing so many resources into this type of program is to make students better able to compete on the global stage for jobs when they become adults. A young student named Xyaira guessed that the second reason was “love,” which earned her a state gold coin and applause from her peers.


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